This is a story of perfection. Not the kind of perfect I thought I wanted but the kind of perfect that can only happen when things fall in place as they are meant to be and the real magic happens. This post includes affiliate links. Read full blog disclosure here.Read More
See how we celebrated World Wide Knit In Public Day at Stitch Up Brooklyn. It was incredibly special! And, because Stitch Up Events are all about inclusiveness, we decided to rename it STITCH In Public Day. We stitched on the streets, we stitched on the ferry, we stitched on the bridge, we stitched on the subway, we stitched in the park. Oh yes, we STITCHED in public!Read More
I look at the beautiful humans who attended Stitch Up Chicago and I see such diversity and representation in age, gender, heritage, skin color and stitch discipline. One of the attendees said to me; “This is the most diverse and inclusive event I have ever been to”. I cried. Because that is my commuKnitty.Read More
Red Heart and Tamara of Moogly brought serious amounts of fiber awesome to Stitch Up Chicago. A very special yarn tasting community event like no other and a treat making the Artfully Simple Cowl. This post includes affiliate links. Read full blog disclosure here.Read More
Universal Yarn has been a supporter and sponsor of Stitch Up Chicago for 3 years now. Since the very first event, the Universal team has seen the vision and supported this community. Kicking off Stitch Up Chicago with Universal Yarn Stitch Night was just perfect. The smiles & stitches tell the story!Read More
You had me at yarn. Throw in chef prepared snacks, great peo0ple AND a discount? Yeah I am all about it! For our third year in a row, we kicked off Stitch Up Chicago with a little pre-game action at Nina Chicago and it was magnificent!Read More
Was it a dream? Did that all just happen? Oh my goodness Stitch Up Chicago how you are the most beautiful amazing days of the year. I am filled with so much gratitude and love from two days of amazing connections through fiber. For me it is so personal, and so very special because when I started this blog it was all about giving back freely, sharing what I know and inspiring the fiber (and maker) community. Stitch Up Chicago was born as an extension of the blog to bring those online connections together and grow in community off line. I had no idea the reward would be so grand. So tangibly amazing. Words cannot describe it so let's just relive it all one more time in a fabulous recap.
And you can bet I am already dreaming ahead and planning Stitch Up Chicago 2019!
We kicked things off with a little pre-game afternoon tea and snacks at one of my FAVORITE places, Nina Chicago LYS (local yarn shop). This was super cool because Nina has a new owner, Hilary, and I just LOVE HER and she was such a great host. The gals did some (a lot) of shopping and we definitely got into the Stitch Up Chicago mode. Hilary has done a pretty amazing job since taking over Nina Chicago and if you are in Chicago definitely go say hi and check it out. Also - they make a mean cuppa ;-)
Back at the Virgin Hotel for the second year in a row, things got off to quite the start Friday with the Wool And The Gang Tau Zion Lion Beanie Knit Kit and a super yummy dinner. And of course, cocktails. It was pretty fabulous to have people there who had never met but share a love for all things fiber. The energy was just INCREDIBLE. I cannot put it into words because IT WAS AMAZING and even that in all caps doesn't cut it.
The Tau Zion Lion Beanie was the perfect kit because we had several new knitters who were so excited to learn. I mean how cool is that? Sign up and register for a Knit intensive event and not know how to knit! That is right because at Stitch Up Chicago you will learn. And they did.
One of the most magical things that happened Friday night was Nancy. Nancy was a guest at the Virgin hotel, in town for a completely different event over the weekend. On her way to the restroom, she noticed all these laughing, smiling, knitting people. She popped in and asked.. "What is this? Some kind of knitting party?" You bet it is! And within 15 minutes Nancy had a kit in hand, pulled up a spot on the sofa and was fully immersed in Stitch Up Chicago Knit Party. Her husband even came down a few hours later to see what was going on and where she went off to. lol. The magic of fiber!!! And the best - Nancy won the raffle for the day including a London Kaye Kit from Lion Brand. She was even a double winner because London was there knitting with us and signed the Kit for her. Truly could not have been more perfect or more magical.
And super fun bonus - Yes, we made two new knitters and I taught London how to knit. Friday night went way past the designated 7pm end time. And no one was shocked by the wee hour end of our knit hang.
Here are just a few snaps of all the fun and pardon the blur - we were having too much fun to worry about it. I have to tell you it was truly a night of smiles, laughs and kits. Yummy eats and a few cocktails too.
Saturday started off with so many yummy eats, new faces and surprises. We were working up the Betta Knit Adela Kit and it was super fun to see so many new knitters get in the action. Betta Knit sent some really fun colors and perfect for that chill Virgin Knit vibe we had going. (The fine team at Betta Knit is giving you 25% off through March 2018 with code 144XBK17 if you want to try some too). Saturday morning definitely went by too fast.
Something new this year was that we added workshops to really feed into our fiber souls and maker hearts. First was the Yarn Tasting sponsored by Universal Yarn. Now, I am a fan of Universal Yarn and in fact they are my selected fiber for the Stitch & Hustle Kit Shop. But I know that many are not familiar with them. So this was super exciting for me to introduce these fibers that I love so much to everyone. It is something special to see someone's face when they discover a "New Fiber". Universal sent some of my favorite fibers along with samples for everyone to see how they work out and lots for everyone to swatch and play with. Based on the feedback I can tell Universal Yarns has some new fans. It was quite a success.
Another workshop series we added was the Photography Series led by my photographer Hannah Weiss. This was special because no matter if you are sharing photos of your fiber for your business or for your passion to friends and family - you always want to show them in the best light (pun intended). And let's be honest - nothing is more frustrating than spending hours upon hours to create something beautiful then having to spend TWICE as long to photograph it!
Hannah led a hands on workshop and Q&A covering everything from at home hacks, how to find the light, filters and apps to help you edit and be true to your own voice and look and how to develop your brand look. It was really fantastic to see so many picking up tips and tricks to improve showing off their creations
As if that wasn't already an amazing event - we closed things out with the most phenomenal Yarn Bomb Party EVER! I had the opportunity to meet and connect with London Kaye, at Vogue Knit Live in NYC and when she said she wanted to come yarn bomb and lead a workshop at Stitch Up Chicago I was beyond excited. In fact, I could hardly contain it. And to top that off, she had just launched her yarn, hooks and kits and the amazing people at Lion Brand joined in the fun and sent us SO. MUCH. YARN. that I could not even count it all.
It was incredible to see so many fiber loving humans come together to make fiber pieces that would become one big PEACE (see what I did there?). London shared a bit of her history and how she found her passion for yarn bombing and developed her ergonomic crochet hooks on a 3D printer. GENIUS! Every grabbed some yarn and moments later there were smiles, creations and it all started to come together.
And of course, my favorite part of the event was teaching people to knit & crochet. Over the course of the event, I taught 5 people to knit and 2 people to crochet and can honestly say that might very well be my favorite part of it all. And we got those pieces worked right into our yarn bomb! Sharing my fiber love is the greatest gift of all.
Truly magical. And the result of us all coming together was so symbolic of what Stitch Up Chicago and this blog is all about: COMMUNITY. This awesome fiber Community. It was in fact the perfect - and only way - Stitch Up Chicago 2018 could have ended.
I am so humbled and so grateful to all who came out and all who supported this event. THANK YOU!
Let's rest up and do it again next year!
Have a scroll through our Yarn Bomb Slideshow and look at all the amazing creative fiber contributions, smiles and laughs as we prepare and then yarn bomb the Virgin Hotel. You can visit our installation all through the month of March.
Special thanks to Hannah Schweiss Photography for capturing the true magic and joy of this event.
A very BIG THANK YOU & HUGE shout out of gratitude to all of the
Stitch Up Chicago Sponsors. Could not have done it without them. Please check them out and stay tuned for more about each of them.
It has been a week since Stitch Up Chicago, and I am still feeling a full heart and incredible gratitude from the sheer awesomeness of the event. I am so honored to have teamed up with fellow yarnie Ali Ford of Ford Explorer Knits to bring this idea to life. It started as a chat then a text, an idea to build from our online community and create an offline connection and meet up in person. But it turned into so much more. Stitch Up Chicago gave us two days of makers and awesome people coming together to laugh, learn, inspire, and connect with each other. So much goodness.
We kicked things off Friday afternoon with a little sip & stitch at Nina, an incredible yarn shop in Chicago. Nina served up awesome yummy tea and snacks and even more yummy yarns. You can bet we will be visting Nina and her awesome shop again.
Ali and I ducked out of Nina's a bit early to head to the Virgin Hotel Chicago to set up for the Friday Night We Are Knitters Party. And what a party it was. Snacks, bevies and knitting good fun. The party was 'officially' from 4-7 but I know one table closed the place down and a few of us may have knitted into the wee morning hours.
So many wonderful highlights from that perfect evening. Teaching new stitches to knit. Teaching new knitters how to knit. Laughing so much my side hurt. Yummy snacks. It was all amazing. See some of the awesome social media shares here
A quick sleep and then it was time for Saturday Brunch Workshop with Betta Knit. This brunch was particularly special because Betta Knit is new in the US and it was great to introduce this yummy yarn to so many. Amazing eats, amazing yarn and amazing people made for a perfect Stitch Up Chicago Day Two.
It would be near impossible to pull a single moment from Stitch Up Chicago as a favorite. The truth is, from beginning to end it was sheer perfection. While Ali and I were planning everything seemed to fall right into place and we just knew this was meant to be.
A special shout out to our presenting Sponsor, The Yarn Mamas and supporting sponsor Globe In and to all of our sponsors because we could not have done this without them. We will be sharing more about our amazing sponsors over the next few weeks. Everyone loved the swag bags filled with awesome gifts and even if you didn't attend Stitch Up Chicago, you can enjoy some sweet discounts from our sponsors here.
Reflecting on last week, all I can really say is Thank you. THANK YOU ALI for teaming up with me and turning our idea to meet up into something so much more. I am truly grateful for your friendship and to be on your team. I love ya girl! THANK YOU to our sponsors. THANK YOU Virgin Hotels Chicago. THANK YOU TO EVERYONE WHO ATTENDED for making the first Stitch Up event more than I could have dreamed.
We are already hard at work planning Stitch Up Chicago Too for late Fall. Don't miss out. Get the insider updates when we announce by signing up for Stitch & Hustle News here.
And if you want us to help you host a Stitch Up in your city, let us know here